Victim’s family sues Alec Baldwin over ‘Rust’ shooting
Feb 10, 2023 - 08:58 AM
LOS ANGELES — The parents and sister of the cinematographer who was shot dead on the set of a low-budget western are suing star Alec Baldwin and the movie’s producers, lawyers said Thursday.
Halyna Hutchins was killed when a Colt .45 that Baldwin was holding went off during rehearsals in New Mexico in October 2021. Director Joel Souza was injured.
Baldwin, along with the film’s armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, already face manslaughter charges which could see them jailed.
The lawsuit was filed in Los Angeles on behalf of Hutchins’ mother Olga Solovey, father Anatolii Androsovych and sister Svetlana Zemko, who live in Ukraine near Kyiv.
It seeks an unspecified sum in compensation for battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence and “loss of consortium,” which is a term referring to being deprived of a relationship, said their lawyer, celebrity attorney Gloria Allred.
“Of course, for all of our three clients, the tragic loss of their daughter and sister is heartbreaking, but now in addition to this tragedy they have to try to cope with that loss while living in Ukraine in the midst of (Russian President Vladimir) Putin’s war,” Allred told reporters.
“Olga is doing her best to cope with the loss of Halyna while at the same time acting as an emergency operating room nurse in a hospital in Ukraine, where she is caring for those who have been hurt in battle.”
Baldwin and other producers of “Rust” have already reached a financial settlement with Hutchins’ widower Matthew.
Allred said the new case was separate to that settlement, and was possible under New Mexico law which allows parents and other close family members to take action.
“To lose my sister… was a horrible experience and it is one of the biggest losses of my life,” said Zemko in a video that was played during a Los Angeles press conference.
“I believe to let this go and to leave this unpunished, is unallowable.”
Allred said Baldwin had not reached out to the family of 42-year-old Hutchins in the wake of the tragedy, and his attorneys had resisted efforts to settle the matter.
The suit also names Gutierrez-Reed, as well as the film’s producers and various crew.
Baldwin, 64, has vehemently denied culpability for Hutchins’ death, and repeatedly said he was told by film crew that the gun was not loaded.
The former “30 Rock” star has also previously insisted he did not pull the trigger, though FBI firearms experts have said this is not possible.
Assistant director Dave Halls, who handed Baldwin the weapon, is also named in the suit. He has agreed to plead guilty in New Mexico to negligent use of a deadly weapon.
Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed, who have denied the criminal charges they face, as well as Halls are expected to appear in court in New Mexico later this month for a virtual hearing.
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